Tuesday, November 16, 2010

TSA Update

From And Still I Persist: John "Don't Touch My Junk" Tyner is now being investigated for refusing a full body search.

Related: An exception to be made for Muslim women?

My view is: adopt whatever it is the Israelis do (they haven't had a terrorist attack on a plane in something like thirty years). If that means profiling, too damned bad. Until then, I'm putting myself on the No Fly List.

Iowahawk: "Comply with me".

Update: Commenter Stosh 2 provides a link to an article that describes how the Israelis do it.


Stosh2 said...

Here's a description of what the Israelis do: The 'Israelification' of airports: High security, little bother


I also believe there's an opt out clause in the original TSA legislation.


JeffS said...

And things ain't gonna get any better due to "self restraint" or "tact" on the part of the so-called Transportation "Security" Agency.

RebeccaH said...

If Muslim women are getting an exemption, I think that would be grounds for all the rest of us to sue on the grounds of religious and gender discrimination. What a mess for our recalcitrant DOJ that would be!

Stosh2 said...

Don't tase my junk, bro!

Anonymous said...

Tyner faces $11,000 of penalties!?! Can't wait to see how much the investigation is going to cost. Too bad Tyner wasn't wearing a burqua.

Deborah Leigh

cac said...

If we do as the Israelis do, be prepared for long delays. On my only experience of security at Ben Gurion airport I was questioned and had every search bar the one with gloves over about 3 hours and everything in my bags searched down to feeling the seams on my sleeping bag. I can only asusme this was based on being born in one of the most anti Israeli countries around (although I am not ethnically arabian) and an trip to Syria - neither of them of course completely irrational. They actually held the flight up for me for an hour and escorted me on board with an armed guard which caused a little consternation among my seatmates.

Paco said...

cac: I fly very rarely, but I'm not going through TSA hell. I'd rather wait the three hours.

cac said...

I quite agree Paco that the Israeli option may be the lesser of two evils. At least I felt secure which I gather is not a guaranteed outcome of the TSA process. They were also incredibly polite throughout. In fact border security were the most polite Israelis I met whom I didn't actually know.

It looks like I'll be travelling to the US for the first time in 2011. Looking forward to it generally but the horror stories I've heard about TSA searches when flying domestically and customs when entering suggest these are not going to be high points of the trip.

JeffS said...

cac, a significant part of the problem, mentioned in Stosh2's link, is that Americans generally don't trust law enforcement and security personnel. There are too many horror stories about incompetents and political hacks in those positions. It's unfair to the true professionals out there, but that's how it is.

But the situation with TSA is even worse. Most of the screeners are lower wage Federal employees, generally overworked, required to enforce silly policies that most rational people (including a lot of those same guards) know aren't all that effective. Add in bureaucratic indifference, and it's a problem waiting to happen.

If I know the person in uniform, maybe I'll trust them. Maybe. Otherwise, no. I'll just grit my teeth and hope for the best. But I don't like it, and I minimize my flying.

On the plus side, I flew through Washington National just after TSA started these "enhanced pat downs". It was a series of long lines, but the airport staff had matters in control, and it took me less than an hour to reach my gate. So it can be fairly quick.

I just won't comment on "efficient", let alone "effective".

Anonymous said...

Representative Mica never envisioned this level of bureaucratic nonsense when he helped write the law that created TSA (according to a link at The Daley Gator http://thedaleygator.wordpress.com/2010/11/16/tsa-goes-after-man-who-dared-defy-their-ultimate-autority/). Uh huh.

Efficiency and effectiveness are NEVER the results with top-heavy bureaucratic entities. If 'fairly quick' is the best that can be said for an ineffective assault on my person and the Constitution, I'll take the 3 hour Israeli version. Why? Because they target the Real Deal, not EVERYONE at the cost of offending SOMEONE.